Fulham are English Deaf Champions 2008!
Fulham travelled to Bishop Stortford FC’s stadium in Hertfordshire, to participate in the prestigious England Deaf Football Challenge Cup Final, against St John’s Arsenal DFC. With the previous fixture between the two big rivals, was back in January, in the BDF quarter-final, away at St John’s coming away from that fixture with a 3-0 loss was very painful for all of the people that are involved in Fulham.
All thoughts were put aside when the EDF Challenge Cup final came around, to play at our own rhythm, team play, and style while containing St John’s to force them to play to our own tempo and style. With the dressing room high in confidence, and with the pain of losing to St John’s earlier in the season still raw in our minds, we were more revved up than ever. The game kicked off and we started to play our own game, and imposing ourselves onto St John’s midfield and defence, and controlling the game exactly how as it was meant to be with the confidence-filling words that was said by the management prior to the game.
As the game went on, Fulham started to find holes in St John’s defence, and at one point Daniel Hogan found himself in such a beautiful position, that he was able to surge ahead with the ball, to go one-on-one with St John’s goalkeeper, and the goalkeeper brought him down in the penalty box. PENALTY to Fulham!! Stand-in captain Ben Lampert elected to take the penalty, and sent Ali Er the wrong way, while coolly slotting the goal in the other direction. 1-0 to Fulham!
Half-time came, and there could’ve not been such beautiful start for the team on the day, being 1-0 up and containing the St John’s players to force them to play at Fulham’s style of football. The 2nd half of the game started, and St John’s went on the offensive, which Fulham’s midfield and defence coped with throughout the game, albeit some hairy moments which St John’s failed to capitalise on. We held on throughout the game, and there was a free kick given against us, in the penalty box which would keep the manager with his heart in his mouth, but thankfully it wasn’t a price that we had to pay as the threat was snuffed and cleared out. The final whistle came soon enough, and mass euphoria overcame the players, the management and the supporters, as we are the
ENGLAND DEAF FOOTBALL CHALLENGE CUP CHAMPIONS OF 07/08!
Michael O’Mahony was awarded the man of the match for his superior performance on the day.
Photos can be seen below.